Huge DRC cache and rare Mouton Rothschild break auction records

Thousands of rare wines from a single collection have fetched more than HK$200m at a Sotheby's auction, as part of a four-day series of Hong Kong sales that also saw fierce bidding for the first limited edition Mouton Rothschild ‘Versailles Celebration’ cases.
  • ‘Unprecedented’ private collection sells for HK$233.6m (nearly US$30m, £23m)

  • First 25 Mouton Rothschild ‘Versailles Celebration’ cases fetch HK$7.1m

  • Four days of Hong Kong auctions total HK$273m, setting new record for ‘any series of wine sales’, says Sotheby’s.

A four-day auction marathon in Hong Kong, including more than 250 lots of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti wines from a private collector plus Mouton Rothschild’s limited edition Versailles Celebration Cases, fetched HK$273m (US$35m, £26.6m).

That is a record for a consecutive series of wine sales, Sotheby’s said.

Private collection

Sotheby’s called the ‘Tran-scend-ent’ collection, featuring thousands of bottles of mature vintages from some of the wine world’s biggest names, the ‘highest-estimated wine auction in history’. The single owner of the collection was not named.

The wines beat their collective pre-sale high estimate, of HK$206m, to reach HK$233.6m after a series of sessions from 29 to 31 March.

Alongside DRC, bidders vied for around 600 lots of Domaine Coche-Dury, 350 lots of Dom Pérignon and 140 lots of Guigal.

Familiar names led the auction league table, however, with three 12-bottle lots of Romanée-Conti 1990 coming top after selling for HK$2.7m each.

Three 12-bottle lots of Mouton Rothschild’s lauded 1945 vintage fetched almost HK$2m.

Mouton Rothschild’s Versailles cases

On 1 April, Sotheby’s followed up with an auction that included 25, limited edition Mouton Rothschild cases produced in collaboration with the Palace of Versailles.

These beat pre-sale estimates to collectively fetch HK$7.1m (US$900,000), said the auction house.

Only 75 of the cases have been made and proceeds from sales will go to Palace of Versailles restoration projects.

The cases include Mouton Rothschild 20052009 and 2010, plus 2013 and 2007; all vintages that carry labels designed by artists who have also exhibited works at Versailles.

‘I am very happy with the results achieved in Hong Kong,’ said Philippe Sereys de Rothschild, chairman and CEO of Baron Philippe de Rothschild SA.

‘We are delighted that all the proceeds of this sale will go towards the restoration of a landmark of the world’s cultural heritage, and are looking forward to welcoming all the successful bidders to celebrate with us at the Palace of Versailles on 21 September, where we will be serving four ex-cellar vintages of Château Mouton Rothschild, including the historic 1945.’

Buyers will also be invited to visit Mouton Rothschild in Bordeaux.

Sotheby’s will auction a further 25 Mouton Versailles cases in London on 17 April, and the final 25 in New York on 4 May this year.


See also:

Single bottle of Romanée-Conti 1945 sells for more than US$500,000